Sure, it’s easy to run by the local pharmacy and pick up a pre-made first-aid kit. This is certainly not a bad idea, but more and more people are foregoing over-the-counter products in lieu of natural home remedies. This is because many OTC products contain harsh ingredients, including additives, preservatives, and chemicals.
If you need a first aid kit – either to keep at home or carry with you on the road, here are some natural remedies you should consider:
1. Tea Tree Oil
TTO is an anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral and antiseptic agent. However, it should never be taken internally and should not be applied directly to the skin. If you wish to apply it to the skin, it should be used with a carrier oil, such as sweet almond oil, olive oil or any available lotion.
2. Yarrow or Cayenne Pepper
Yarrow is an herb and cayenne is a spice. But what they have in common is that they naturally help blood to clot. It can be made into a thick paste and applied directly to a cut to help stop the bleeding.
3. Calendula Oil
Made with the naturally anti-bacterial calendula flower, it usually contains olive oil and calendula flowers. You can always make this simple oil at home if you’d like.
**Calendula oil can be mixed with TTO and either yarrow or cayenne to get a better topical treatment for cuts and scrapes.
4. Arnica cream or gel
You can purchase this online or even at many big box stores. Made from a flowering plant, arnica cream is great for sore muscles, sprains and bruises. Do not apply to open or broken skin.
5. Chamomile and peppermint tea bags
These teas can help relieve indigestion and an upset stomach. Chamomile can also promote a feeling of restfulness and reduce anxiety. After being thoroughly soaked in water, the teabags can be applied topically to help relieve itching or as a natural antibiotic.
6. Aloe Vera Gel
Unless you have an aloe plant at home, you can purchase a small bottle of aloe vera to help with bug bites, stings and of course – burns.
7. Small bottle of apple cider vinegar
Sounds strange, but vinegar can be used as a natural bug repellent. You may smell like a pickle, but the bugs will most likely leave you alone! Also If someone has a sore throat, gargling with some ACV will help soothe the throat and possibly keep the illness away.
8. Bentonite Clay
Mixed with water, this clay will make a paste that draws toxins from the skin. It’s often used after bug bites, spider bites, snake bites or on boils or pimples.
9. Dried plantain
After crushing the plantain leaf, and mixing with a little oil or water, it can be applied topically to help with rashes of unknown origin, eczema, psoriasis as well as the traditional cuts, scrapes, poison ivy or poison oak.
10. Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal pretty much sucks up toxins. It can be taken internally in the case of accidental poisoning or can be used topically on snake bites or allergens.
When packing your first aid kit, don’t forget the accessories: tweezers, scissors, cotton wound covers, bandages, scraps of fabric, tape, and superglue to hold together minor cuts.